April 1, 2022
Three new early-literacy apps—released for free from Harvard Graduate School of Education and its Reach Every Reader initiative—are designed for parents and caregivers to use with their children to encourage fun and rewarding interactions, promote dialogue, and give children the foundations they need to read, learn, and thrive.
Small Wonders is specially designed for caregivers and children to use together, with games, songs, and activity ideas that can be the start of many back-and-forth conversations. The app offers tips to help build children’s language skills off-screen too, while running errands or doing other everyday activities.
In Photo Play, caregivers and children choose a photo of their own and have fun drawing on it, decorating it, playing hide and seek with it, and talking about people and events that the photo brings to mind. It too offers tips to build skills off-screen, as children go about their daily activities.
Animal Antics invites caregivers and children to take on the personalities of lovable animal characters in a variety of story settings. In each scenario, the child and caregiver take turns choosing facial expressions and recording dialogue. Then they can play back the entire story. Like the other apps, Animal Antics offers tips to help build children’s language skills off-screen.
All three apps are freely downloadable for iOS and Android mobile devices.